RE: Is "untar" an acceptable verb?

Subject: RE: Is "untar" an acceptable verb?
From: Peter Sturgeon <prsturgeon -at- bell -dot- net>
To: <neilson -at- windstream -dot- net>, techwrl <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Tue, 13 Mar 2012 15:45:09 -0400

The question was whether untar was acceptable as a verb. It is. You untar (or extract) by running the tar command with different options.

Recipients of .tgz files will know what to do. Or should. For everyone else, there is InstallShield :)

Been using *nix variants since the mid-eighties, and never heard anybody laugh (out loud, at least) when untar got used as a verb.



> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
> Subject: Re: Is "untar" an acceptable verb?
> Date: Tue, 13 Mar 2012 15:34:17 -0400
> From: neilson -at- windstream -dot- net
> On Tue, 13 Mar 2012 15:07:10 -0400, Jeff Scattini
> <jeff -dot- scattini -at- gmail -dot- com> wrote:
> > I started a new contract a little while ago, and the software in question
> > can be delivered by TAR (.tgz) files.
> >
> > Is the term "untar" acceptable the same way you can "unzip" a collection
> > of
> > files? A quick search in Google seems to suggest that it is acceptable,
> > but
> > I wanted to throw the question to a TARgeted (sorry) audience of
> > techwr-lrs.
> I normally use
> gunzip and
> tar -xf
> separately, but I believe you can also use
> tar -zxf
> There is no "untar" command.
> The history of tar is in making and restoring tape archives. In the early
> days of Unix the only feasible backup or transport medium was magnetic
> tape, but tape is a very poor medium upon which to build a random-access
> file system. With the exception of DECtape, tape is really a
> sequential-access medium. Seeking a particular block of data on a tape
> generally required rewinding to the beginning and counting forwards.
> Tar provided a means for creating a representation of a Unix file system
> on tape, and the default output (or input) was the tape drive. The "-f"
> option in tar allows the specification of a file instead of the tape.
> Since "tar" was an action on tapes, there was no concept of tarring and
> untarring. Instead the fundamental actions were to create (-c), to append
> (-r), and to extract (-x) file images on the tape.
> On the other hand, if you say "untar" any Dilbert is likely to understand
> precisely what you mean. He may sort of laugh up his sleeve at your choice
> of words.

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Is "untar" an acceptable verb?: From: Jeff Scattini
Re: Is "untar" an acceptable verb?: From: Peter Neilson

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